Florida, Feb 7: SpaceX launched “World’s most powerful rocket” called Falcon Heavy from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s (NASA) Kennedy Space Center in Florida. On its highly anticipated maiden test flight, the Falcon Heavy carried CEO Elon Musk’s cherry red Tesla roadster to an orbit near Mars. Also Read - 'Out of This World': NASA Astronaut Shares Breathtaking Video of Earth From Space, Leaves Twitter Awestruck | Watch
The Falcon Heavy blasted off from Florida’s Kennedy Space Center at 3:45 p.m. EST (2145 GMT), carrying something just for fun: a red Tesla Roadster belonging to SpaceX and Tesla founder Elon Musk, Xinhua reported. Also Read - SpaceX's Falcon 9 Launches More Starlink Satellites for Affordable Internet
It was in 2011 when Musk had announced the plans to develop Falcon Heavy in 2011 adding that it would be ready to fly in 2013. “At first, it sounds really easy: Just stick two first stages on as strap-on boosters. How hard can that be?” Musk said at a conference, adding, “But then everything changes. All the loads change, aerodynamics totally change; you’ve tripled the vibration and acoustics,” Musk explained. Also Read - Elon Musk Beats Bill Gates to Become World's Second Richest Person
On the eve of the launch, Musk had said that he’s at peace with whatever happens. “It’s guaranteed to be exciting, one way or another,” Musk said. He also claimed that normally he feels “stressed out” before a launch but this time he doesn’t which may be a bad sign.
Falcon Heavy, the ‘World’s Most Powerful Rocket’, has three first-stage boosters which are strapped together with 27 engines. It is 40 feet (12 meters) at the base and 230 feet (70 meters) tall.
Two boosters of Falcon Heavy are recycled and were previously flown on Falcon 9 launches.
In an animated video released by SpaceX, all three rocket boosters can be seen coming back to upright landings on Earth. The car and mannequin then emerged from the nose cone and released into the orbit.
Three cameras have been installed on the Roadster which would send back “some epic views if they work and everything goes well. The car will make an elliptical orbit around the Sun before getting into vicinity of Mars.
Meanwhile, Planetary Society’ s Jason Davis had described the Falcon Heavy as “mythical”.